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Barcelona MotoGP: Lorenzo beats Marquez for first Ducati pole

Barcelona MotoGP: Lorenzo beats Marquez for first Ducati pole
Jun 16, 2018, 1:03 PM

Jorge Lorenzo claimed his first MotoGP pole position for Ducati in qualifying for the Catalan Grand Prix in Barcelona.

Jorge Lorenzo, Ducati Team
Jorge Lorenzo, Ducati Team
Jorge Lorenzo, Ducati Team
Valentino Rossi, Yamaha Factory Racing
Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team, braking
Andrea Iannone, Team Suzuki MotoGP
Takaaki Nakagami, Team LCR Honda

Lorenzo, who had recorded his first win with Ducati last time out at Mugello, beat the resurgent Marc Marquez by 0.066s late on in the Q2 decider.

Marquez had been consigned to his second-ever Q1 appearance in MotoGP by a late crash in third practice, but made short work of advancing to the pole shoot-out.

He ended his first run in the opening segment with a comfortable lead, and gradually improved his time with several successive laps late on, never threatened by any of the other Q1 riders.

As Q2 kicked off, Lorenzo took the initial lead, only for Marquez to fire in a 1m38.886s – the best lap of the weekend at that point, completed in tow behind Tech 3 Yamaha's Johann Zarco – which left the reigning champion almost four tenths clear after the opening runs.

Dovizioso improved to within 0.037s of pole as the final runs kicked off, only for Marquez to respond immediately, recording a 1m38.746s.

But Lorenzo, who appeared to rage at his crew after coming into the pits for his bike swap, was even faster, finding time on Marquez in the final sector and securing pole position with a 1m38.680s.

Lorenzo still had time for a final flying lap, but did not make gains, which left him vulnerable to last-gasp efforts from Dovizioso and Marquez.

Dovizioso had been up on Lorenzo two sectors in after the chequered flag, but came up on Yamaha's Maverick Vinales and couldn't improve.

The same fate befell Marquez, who was only a tenth short heading into the final sector before coming up on Pramac's Danilo Petrucci.

With Marquez and Dovizioso completing the front row, Vinales was the top Yamaha in fourth, just 0.003s clear of Suzuki's Andrea Iannone – whose works teammate Alex Rins will start only 15th.

Petrucci, who stopped alongside Marquez after the chequered flag to apologise, made up the second row, ahead of Valentino Rossi, who was forced to roll out of his final effort after a huge moment.

Zarco took eighth, with Avintia Ducati's Tito Rabat ninth and Cal Crutchlow only 10th, his qualifying compromised by a late crash at the high-speed Turn 13 right-hander.

Marquez's Honda teammate Dani Pedrosa was 11th, ahead of LCR Honda rookie Takaaki Nakagami – the Japanese rider making his first Q2 appearance after denying Pramac Ducati's Jack Miller in the fight for second in Q1.

Q2 results

1 99 spain Jorge Lorenzo Ducati 1'38.680  
2 93 spain Marc Marquez Honda 1'38.746 0.066
3 4 italy Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 1'38.923 0.243
4 25 spain Maverick Viñales Yamaha 1'39.145 0.465
5 29 italy Andrea Iannone Suzuki 1'39.148 0.468
6 9 italy Danilo Petrucci Ducati 1'39.178 0.498
7 46 italy Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1'39.266 0.586
8 5 france Johann Zarco Yamaha 1'39.331 0.651
9 53 spain Tito Rabat Ducati 1'39.504 0.824
10 35 united_kingdom Cal Crutchlow Honda 1'39.556 0.876
11 26 spain Dani Pedrosa Honda 1'39.695 1.015
12 30 japan Takaaki Nakagami Honda 1'39.888 1.208

Q1 results

1 93 spain Marc Marquez Honda 1'39.217  
2 30 japan Takaaki Nakagami Honda 1'39.663 0.446
3 43 australia Jack Miller Ducati 1'39.732 0.515
4 55 malaysia Hafizh Syahrin Yamaha 1'39.879 0.662
5 42 spain Alex Rins Suzuki 1'39.918 0.701
6 41 spain Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 1'40.010 0.793
7 38 united_kingdom Bradley Smith KTM 1'40.019 0.802
8 21 italy Franco Morbidelli Honda 1'40.058 0.841
9 44 spain Pol Espargaro KTM 1'40.178 0.961
10 45 united_kingdom Scott Redding Aprilia 1'40.300 1.083
11 17 czech_republic Karel Abraham Ducati 1'40.449 1.232
12 19 spain Alvaro Bautista Ducati 1'40.524 1.307
13 36 finland Mika Kallio KTM 1'40.572 1.355
14 12 switzerland Thomas Luthi Honda 1'40.590 1.373
15 50 france Sylvain Guintoli Suzuki 1'40.834 1.617
16 10 belgium Xavier Simeon Ducati 1'41.369 2.152


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